ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Articles by Gaurav DattSubscribe to Gaurav Datt

The COVID-19 Pandemic and Migrant Workers from Rural Bihar

More than half of rural households had at least one migrant worker prior to the pandemic, and for 94% of these households, their migrant workers’ livelihood was adversely affected. There was large-scale reverse migration with a huge fraction of returning migrants spending as much as four to five months in native villages with limited opportunities for alternative work (including the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act employment). The disruption of employment among migrant workers who stayed in destination areas led to drastic cuts in their remittances back home. About one-fifth of the migrant workers who had gone back to the destination areas were yet to resume work at destination sites at the time of survey.

Shining for the Poor Too?

The authors revisit the findings of their past research on poverty and growth in India in the light of the 14 rounds of the National Sample Survey now available for the period since economic reforms began in 1991. They find that the rate of poverty reduction has increased in the post-reform period, compared to the previous 30-year period, although it is still too early to say if this marks a new trend. In contrast to the pre-reform period, the post-reform process of urban economic growth appears to have brought significant gains to the rural poor as well as to the urban poor.

A Model-Based Assessment of India's Progress in Reducing Poverty in the 1990s

An econometric model of poverty incidence is calibrated to 20 household surveys for India's 15 major states spanning 1960-1994. The model builds on past research suggesting that the key determinants of the rate of poverty reduction at state level are agricultural yields, growth of the non-farm sector (depending on the state's initial conditions), development spending, and inflation. The model is used to predict the rates of poverty reduction over the period 1994-2000. The overall incidence of poverty is projected to have fallen from 39 per cent to 34 per cent over this period, suggesting that the rate of poverty reduction in the 1990s is slightly lower than the 1980s, and lower than one would have expected given the growth in the 1990s. We offer some explanations as to why the growth process in the 1990s has not done more to reduce poverty in India.

India s Checkered History in Fight Against Poverty-Are There Lessons for the Future

India's Checkered History in Fight Against Poverty Are There Lessons for the Future?
Martin Ravallion Gaurav Datt Looking back 40 years or so, progress against poverty in India has been highly uneven over time and space. It took 20 years for the national poverty rate to fall below and stay below its value in the early 1950s. And trend rates of poverty reduction have differed appreciably between states. This paper provides an overview of results from a research project which has been trying to understand what influence economywide and sectoral factors have played in the evolution of poverty measures for India since the 1950s. There are some clear lessons for the future.

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